Martini column: Now, we are amongst ourselves again

While it may be true that the 24h Race which ran four weeks ago represented the highlight of the season for many teams and fans, but the number of VLN races is higher and also longer in total.

During the first three rounds of the season, I have heard many statements of GT3 team members saying that their participation indeed had “only been a test for the 24h Race”. I tell you guys that the VLN should not be sold at less than its true value. Also in the VLN, a victory at the Nordschleife is and remains something very special – and this for all drivers, whether they are professional or amateur drivers. And this will in particular apply in future when the VLN, together with the Nürburgring, will further develop its media-related value.

So there is an equal number of teams and fans who now say: Now we are back amongst ourselves and we are looking forward to seven further highlights in the year 2016. Although in particular the media puts a huge focus on the 24h Race, the VLN has no reason at all to keep a low profile with regard to its sporting value. The spectacular GT3 cars, mostly entered by works teams or works-supported team, have of course marked the first three races of the VLN season. Their numbers on the grid will now go down a little but the SP9 will continue to provide top-class motorsport action at the Nordschleife, in particular with its regular participants such as Phoenix, Wochenspiegel Manthey, Frikadelli or Walkenhorst. But also in the other classes, and in particular in those, we may expect interesting and exciting races and fights. Some teams will hereby for sure already dream of the championship title.

Will Alexander Mies and Michael Schrey of Bonk Motorsport be able to retain their chances onto the championship title? There is no doubt that this is the team in the BMW M235i Racing Cup to be beaten in the Cup5 class. Yet, the competition in this Cup, which figures up to 20 cars and more each time, about a class win is extremely close every time and Schrey and Mies, too, had to experience this in their first races. The battles in almost all of the 23 classes will however also be hard. Let’s now finally hope that the weather will be favourable for the fans and in particular for the many marshals out on the track.